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Raiza Biza - The Imperfectionist


Honey, Milk and Blood

(Art is Hard Records)

As Shunkan, 20-year-old sing­er, multi-instru­ment­al­ist and DIY record pro­du­cer Mar­ina Sakimoto cre­ates bed­sit indie-pop songs, which while drenched in an emo­tion­al register of solitude, are as expans­ive as great crash­ing ocean waves. Based in Inver­car­gill but ori­gin­ally from Los Angeles, Shunkan has just released her first prop­er EP, Honey, Milk and Blood, via boutique UK imprint Art is Hard Records. Five songs long, the gui­tar/­voice-heavy com­pos­i­tions fold togeth­er the fuzz of My Bloody Valentine, the grandeur of Sig­ur Rós and the exper­i­ment­al inno­cence of the K Records mod­ern folk scene. The out­come is stun­ning: essen­tial indie listening.

Raiza Biza

The Imper­fec­tion­ist

(AmmoNation/Young, Gif­ted & Broke)

Shunkan - Honey, Milk and Blood - cover Over the last two years, Hamilton-based Rwandan hip hop artist Raiza Biza has dropped what, with the release of The Imper­fec­tion­ist, counts as four albums. Son­ic­ally his most accom­plished, this latest offer­ing sees him wrap­ping his head around the trans­form­a­tion of his teen­age pas­sion into a sus­tain­able career, while reflect­ing on lean­er, hun­gri­er days past. Run­ning his smooth, rhythmic deliv­ery against soul‑, jazz- and synth-funk-informed instru­ment­als, he gives us an hon­est win­dow into not just the nights out per­form­ing, but also the real­it­ies of the morn­ings after. Jam-packed full of cre­at­ive guest appear­ances, The Imper­fec­tion­ist is a com­pel­ling and intel­li­gent listen.




(Won­der­ful Noise Records)

Sorceress - DoseWith the release of their debut album, Chequered Thoughts, Auck­land digit­al soul quin­tet Sor­ceress (formerly known as Funkom­munity) proved their mettle on the inter­na­tion­al stage. Two years and sev­er­al loc­al and inter­na­tion­al tours later, they return rebranded as Sor­ceress, with a new album in hand. Sing­er Rachel Fraser’s scorch­ing 1990s R&B/trip hop-informed voice is cap­tiv­at­ing as always, and band lead­er Isaac Aesili’s instru­ment­al arrange­ments remain reli­ably retro-futur­ist­ic and celes­ti­al (in an elec­tron­ic psy­che­del­ic sense). Lead single ‘Tea­cups’ is drenched in strut­ting neo-soul cool. Else­where on Dose, tem­pos rise and fall, tra­vers­ing a dizzy­ing array of styles in the process.


Film Festival Music Recommendations

The Punk Sing­er (Sini Ander­son)


Amer­ic­an dir­ect­or Sini Ander­son takes us on a jour­ney through the life and times of musi­cian, act­iv­ist and writer Kath­leen Hanna, the cent­ral archi­tect of the Riot grrl move­ment and front woman of Bikini Kill and Le Tigre. Heart-warm­ing and heart­break­ing, it’s a power­ful por­trait of one of the most import­ant fem­in­ist artists of the 1990s and early 2000s.


20,000 Days on Earth (Iain For­syth & Jane Pollard)


Ref­er­en­cing the num­ber of days he has been alive, 20,000 Days on Earth is an exper­i­ment­al look at some life-chan­ging events in the jour­ney of Nick Cave, one of the truly sem­in­al Aus­trali­an song­writers. Watch him dis­cuss his past with the cam­era, and drive friends around Brighton, the city he has called his home since the 1980s.


Nga Reo o te When­ua (Voices of the Land) (Paul Wolf­fram)


For the last 40 years, Dr Richard Nunns has ded­ic­ated his life to research­ing and per­form­ing with taonga pūoro (tra­di­tion­al Māori instru­ments). In this new doc­u­ment­ary, Paul Wolf­fram takes a close look at Nunns, his ongo­ing battle with Parkinson’s dis­ease, and his fight to secure the future of this ancient tradition.


All Is by My Side (John Rid­ley)


After writ­ing the script for 12 Years a Slave, John Rid­ley steps into the dir­ect­ori­al chair with All Is by My Side. Star­ring rap­per André 3000 of Out­Kast as Jimi Hendrix, the film depicts the story of Jimi’s early days, paint­ing a pic­ture of the gui­tar god in the days just before his myth­mak­ing really began.



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